There is something very strange about any critical overview which describes New Historicism as 'develop[ing] in response to New Criticism'. It's not wrong, as such; it's just, given the time-gap between New Criticism falling out of favour and New Historicism skipping giddily in, weird to think of the latter's development as a bunch of literary critics sitting in a room for several decades trying to puzzle things out ("You know... I keep getting this nagging feeling that historical context is important, but I can't quite put my finger on why..." "No, same here, and - my God, is it 1975 already? Who wants some more coffee?") until Stephen Greenblatt leaps onto a desk shouting "Eureka, everybody, I've got it!"